A Brief Comment on Noynoy-Gloria Political Catfight

NOTE: This was first published on Dec. 10, 2011. 

 I find it really funny and amusing that some flips online and in many Facebook groups are creating so much fuss about the highly publicized political broil between President Noynoy Aquino and his predecessor, former president and now congresswoman Gloria Arroyo. To me this issue is actually a non-issue. I don’t give a damn if the current administration is obviously exerting so much political effort in investigating or in trying to jail Gloria for her past political and/or legal crimes. That’s what Gloria did to Erap.

I have no problem at all with Noynoy’s hold departure order, which was also religiously, strictly applied by Gloria during her term. If the ‘Arroyo Supreme Court’ believes that even criminals charged with crimes before the courts and corrupt politicians with pending cases and (legal and legislative) investigations have the right to escape our justice system and commit further injury against their victims, then the best thing to do is repeal or purge that directive or law that justifies the state’s issuance of HDO.

Let me offer the following analogy.

A judge fined and convicted a foreign national for maintaining “dummies” in RP. Of course, the judge’s decision created so much fuss among the alleged classical liberals and pro-capitalism, which perhaps include Warlito Nobleza Vicente and his ilk. Warling and his asungots complain that the judge’s ruling was immoral and against capitalism and freedom. Well, what these morons don’t understand is that the judge was merely interpreting an existing law. He had no power to repeal it through mere judicial decisions. So however immoral or evil his decision may be, it remains legal and constitutional.

The same analogy applies to the Gloria case. Did Gloria not arbitrarily apply the equally arbitrary power of HDO? She did, and did it vindictively. So is PNOY now vindictive? I don’t care about Panot’s political agenda against the former president. However, I don’t think pursuing the many presidential peccadilloes of Gloria is vindictive at all. It’s’ not vindictive if you apply the law.

So stop making this sick issue a choice between Gloria and Panot, or between two political evils. That’s not the only choice. The actual and best choice is between Freedom and Statism. If you still don’t understand it, let me spell it to you right now: Gloria and Panot are the products of our evil political system. They are the lucky beneficiaries of our comprehensive welfare state.

In regard to the legality, propriety, or morality of the HDO against Gloria, let me reproduce the following excerpts from Justice Antonio Carpio’s Dissenting Opinion:

I vote to defer action on petitioners’ prayer for a temporary restraining order until after the Government files its Comment and after oral arguments are heard on the matter. This should take not more than five working days, which is brief enough so as not to prejudice petitioners in any way. While the right to travel is a constitutional right that may be impaired only “in the
interest of national security, public safety or public health, as may be provided by law,” there are recognized exceptions other than those created by law. Foremost is the restriction on the right to travel of persons charged of crimes before the courts. Another is the restriction on persons subpoenaed or ordered arrested by the Senate or House of Representatives pursuant to their power of legislative inquiry….

In the present case, petitioners are already undergoing preliminary investigation in several criminal cases, and charges may be filed before the courts while petitioners are abroad. In fairness to the Government which is tasked with the prosecution of crimes, this Court must hear first the Government in oral argument before deciding on the temporary restraining order which if issued could frustrate the Government’s right to prosecute. The Government must be heard on how the charges against petitioners could proceed while petitioners are abroad.

Accordingly, I vote to (1) defer action on petitioners’ prayer for a temporary restraining order, (2) require respondents to file their Comments on or before 21 November 2011, (3) hold oral arguments on 22 November 2011 at 2 o’clock in the afternoon, and (4) decide whether to issue a temporary restraining order immediately upon the conclusion of the oral arguments.

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